Everybody talks about Monday. After resting on weekends, nobody like going back to work on Monday. Most people work 9-5 jobs except the few departments works 24 hours, 365 days, and 7 days a week. Everybody should appreciate those people who works in those department such as firefighters, law enforcements, an emergency medical team, and the emergency departments. All those departments have a very close connection and empathy with each others. Of course, we work all the holidays. The entire America shutdown on X-mas except us. Even, the nature won’t stop us working.
However, Monday is not a good day for us. So, don’t get sick or break your bones because you will be waiting in the emergency room waiting for area at least 5-7 hours. The number of waiting patients often defeat the actual patients inside the ED due to the imbalance of demand and supply.
The patients sitting in the lobby are also sick, but their sickness could wait to be seen or manage. The staff feels totally empathy and sympathy with them. The emergency staff understands they are also sick and in pain. However, the priority goes to life-threatening emergencies such as trauma, GSW, real heart attack, and stroke patients. The emergency staff has their own meaning of ABCD, and everyone complies with this important alphabets. Simply A means airway, B means breathing, C means circulation, and D means disability if the patients don’t qualify for those 4 categories, they could wait in the lobby.
Most people do not understand the real meaning of our ABCD. So they start fighting with the front desk staff. Thank God, all our emergency rooms are locked down unit. The patients sitting in the lobby are not ignored either. Their all required testing begins while they first step into a triage unit. In case the test shows any critical result, we get the call right away. There is a trained nurse always sit to watch those patients. Only things they won’t have access to the doctors.
Why Monday is so busy? The patients don’t have access to their primary care doctors over the weekends and they won’t get appointment Monday, so they come to the ED by themselves or referred by their doctors. Some go out of town, they get sick, no option they come to the ED. Some run out of the medications, let’s go to the emergency room. On weekends, get drunks and did not know whom they have sex with, let’s go to the ED for STD screening. Most interesting things, some of them just come to get work note because they were busy partying and drinking and using drugs but the next day they cannot go to work. Of course, they could get fired so they come save their jobs. Our one signature save their job, we feel proud ourselves helping unemployment rate, but they need to show little patience. Their work or STD treatment is not our priority because ABCD is our priority.
They curse us, they threaten us. Of course, while sitting in the waiting area, they eat the food, and they socialize with each other. Inside the ED, we are fighting alone without eating any food or drink. Sometimes it is hard to bring everybody inside the main emergency room due to unavailability of the beds. The state regulates the capacity of the bed in each emergency department after evaluation of their own ABCD. Many times, we end up resuscitating the patients in the hallways. Of course, next day we ends up answering to the hospital administration for compromising the HIPPA policy.
I always apologized to my patients about the wait time. At the end, both parties understand each other. Not everybody yelled or screamed at us. Once a school teacher whose daughter was involved in the car accident had given me a hug. She approached me and said, “I don’t have a word to appreciate your work, so I want to give you a hug if you don’t mind”. The woman had watched us working hard.
The real value of our ABCD understand by those patients or their family members who just returned back to the earth after just knocking at the front door of the heaven. The door of heaven could open if we delay to provide the timely-fashion care, then we cannot do our job. No, we don’t compete with God but we use all our sources as a team does not matter if on the stretcher is a criminal, gangster, or a police man or anybody but for us he or she is a patient, so we fight to save the lives. I could see the happiness on my staff’s faces when they succeed in their efforts. We also feel sadness when we lose. Yes, we do have empathy, sympathy, and of course humanity.
Therefore, my Monday always start with chaos but always have a happy ending.